Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Massachusetts Nursing Homes Cited for Violations

Over the past three years, Massachusetts nursing home inspectors acting on behalf of the U.S. Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services found 27 elder care deficiencies at a long-term care facility in Tewksbury and penalized the home with $13,000 in fines. Eight miles away, a nursing home in Wilmington was found to have six deficiencies and fined $117,160, the highest civil monetary penalty CMS levied in Massachusetts during that time period. The difference in the strictness of sanctions is the severity of the deficiencies. Woodbriar of Wilmington was penalized when a patient died of drug toxicity after a medication dosage error. At Blaire House of Tewksbury, none of the deficiencies was categorized as serious. CMS classifies deficiencies as serious if they harm a patient or put a patient in immediate jeopardy. Nursing homes with serious deficiencies are fined, but a review of inspection surveys in a database created by investigative journalism group ProPublica shows that less severe citations can pile up without penalties being imposed. In Greater Lowell, CMS has reports for the 27 facilities that accept Medicare and Medicaid, putting them under the agency's jurisdiction. Of these 27 nursing homes, four have been found deficiency-free: Life Care Center of Acton, Littleton's Life Care Center of Nashoba Valley, Seven Hills Pediatric Center in Groton, and Lowell's D'Youville Transitional Care, the short-term rehabilitation facility affiliated with D'Youville Senior Care.

Read more: http://www.lowellsun.com/todaysheadlines/ci_22609556/widely-varying-sanctions-at-area-nursing-homes#ixzz2LBgVs2tc

by Bernard Hamill 
See more articles:
Nursing Home Abuse

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